A new project spearheaded by designer Qiang Huang called Bike Scavengers, is aimed at salvaging bicycle parts culled from piles of discarded bike-shares, and using them to create functional pieces of furniture.
The initiative was created to encourage people to disassemble the millions of discarded bikes left on the streets of China and other urban centers around the world, and transform them into statement furniture pieces based on designs provided by Bike Scavengers.
In China alone, there are more than 60 bike-share companies that have produced upwards of 20 million bikes, many of which have been illegally dumped in metropolitan areas all around the country.
“At the heart of the project is a critique of the environmental detriment caused by bike-sharing schemes in their operations and unregulated growth in China,” said Huang.
“Presenting what a bike-made product looks like gives an opportunity to our users to be upcycling practitioners and to take social responsibility.”
The collection includes a Bench of Saddles featuring a metal frame with rows of vertical fixings for attaching 36 discarded saddles, wherein the interlocking saddles form a single seating surface with a repetitive pattern that Huang says symbolizes “the over-production of shared bikes”.
Other pieces include lamps made from salvaged mudguards, a stool featuring six saddles attached to a stem-like base and a kitchen trolley created by fixing bike baskets to a simple frame with wheels.
“These products could not only be functional commodities but also provocative pieces reminding people how bike sharing affected us and in what way we could protect our living environment and future,” Huang explains.
While the word “scavenger” can have a negative connotation, Huang hopes the work of repurposing these disused bikes will have a profound impact on cleaning up the environment and reward people with interesting and functional furniture pieces that would otherwise be left to contaminant the landscape.
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